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August is Rural Broadband Month at the FCC

FCC Chairman Pai posted a blog on July 13th announcing that August would be Rural Broadband Month at the FCC. He announced the following agenda to be discussed at the August 3 Open meeting:

  • A Public Notice to initiate the pre-auction process for the Connect America Fund Phase II auction. This auction will award up to $2B over the next decade to broadband providers that commit to offer voice and broadband services to fixed locations in unserved high-cost areas in America.

  • The FCC will take another step to consider implementing Phase II of another universal service program, the Mobility Fund. Earlier this year, the Commission adopted a Mobility Framework to allocate up to $4.3B to advance 4G-LTE service, primarily in rural areas that would not be served in the absence of government support. The FCC plans to develop a "challenge process" to resolve disputes over which areas should be eligible for the subsidies.

  • Form 477 will be revised to collect more meaningful data about Broadband service in America.

  • The FCC plans to vote on exploring opportunities for next generation wireless services in the mid-spectrum band range (3.7 GHz to 24 GHz).

  • The FCC also plans to vote on whether the patchwork service-specific renewal rules should be replaced with a uniform system of rules for carriers seeking to renew licenses so that more of rural America can be served.

We continue to maintain focus on all of the FCC activities related to wireless and especially rural America - with particular emphasis on the ATSC 3.0 NRPM and related issues impacting broadcasters.

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